AC: After the Church began, a shorthand used to denote the years which followed the creation of the Church of the Priarch.
Amat: Priarch’s firstborn son, known as the First Son, he is the God of Life and Love. He is worshiped as the one true God of the Church of the First Son, and as an equal member of the Six in the Hexacracy. The Church of the Priarch considers him, and his siblings, as traitors, and do not worship them.
Ashrise: A Holy Day which occurs on the 10th of Embos, it marks the death of Prophet Imran. Ash collected from Embershine is placed in special paper lanterns that ascend into the sky, where it is then released as the lanterns burn up, spreading the ash across the land.
Bal: Priarch’s second born son, he is the God of Land and Underland. He is worshiped as an equal member of the Six in the Hexacracy.
Bartha: A nation Dawnward of Vuria, it follows the Hexacracy. Its capital is Bartok, where the Eternal Emperor, Volgan, rules with an iron fist.
BC: Before the Church existed, a shorthand used to denote the years which preceded the creation of the Church of the Priarch.
Beliere Estate: A large estate belonging to the esteemed House Beliere. It sits at the foothills of Mount Erif.
Burial: According to the Church of the Priarch, burial is to be reserved for the worst sinners upon their deaths. It is seen as the ultimate punishment, as they will be forever blocked off from Priarch’s radiance and their souls will not join him in his eternal embrace. However, the Church of the First Son has an opposite view, believing that burial brings one closer to Amat, their God, whilst cremation destroys the body and soul entirely.
Calendar: The calendar consists of ten months of thirty days. Each month is broken into three weeks of ten days.
Cardinal Directions: Dawnward (East), Duskward (West), Northward (North), Southward (South).
Church of the First Son, The: One of the four prominent religions in the Flamelands, it was founded as an offshoot of the Church of the Priarch. It worships Amat, Priarch’s First born Son, and claims that he alone is worthy of worship, with Amat’s siblings seen as lesser deities created to manage Amat’s creations. Traditionally, first born sons are held in high regard, and are given preferential treatment with regards to jobs, marriage partners and societal status. Women are generally thought to only be good for childbearing and childrearing, which has led to families hiding or killing first born daughters and has given rise to a 70:30 male to female gender ratio. Their priests are known as Kindred, and they lose their familial names upon their acceptance into the Church, gaining the prefix ‘Son’ in exchange. Another common tradition is to name a first born son after his father. with the new name containing a number denoting their generation. This religion is popular in Rey-Amat, Son-Amat, Lut-Amat and Nome.
Church of the Priarch, The: One of the four prominent religions in the Flamelands, it was founded by Prophet Imran shortly after he started to receive his prophetic visions. It worships Priarch and abhors his six children, who betrayed him and gravely wounded him in battle. It is primarily worshiped in Vuria, where the Church and Crown have enjoyed a long and productive history. Its priests are known as Prions, and upon completing their ten years of training, they receive a Holy Order, written by Prophet Imran before his death.
Ciel: Priarch’s second born daughter, she is the Goddess of Sky and Sea. She is worshiped as an equal member of the Six in the Hexacracy.
Clothing, Prion: Pre-Prions wear yellow robes until they complete their ten years of training, after which they receive a set of red robes. Upon completion of their Holy Order, they don white robes, and for every ten years spent in the Church, a strip of blue is added to denote their status. Black robes are reserved solely for Prophets.
Council of Faith, The: A meeting which took place in 207AC between the four most prominent religions of the Flamelands: The Church of the Priarch; The Church of the First Son; The Lusetan Faith and The Hexacracy. It was meant to settle old differences and foster cooperation between the nations of the Flamelands, however it ended in tragedy due to the actions of a rogue Prion.
Cremation: In the Church of the Priarch, cremation is the standard method of disposing the bodies of the dead. For the faithful who committed no grave sins, their bodies are destroyed by fire, freeing their souls to ascend towards the Eternal Flame. There, they will enjoy peace and tranquility in Priarch’s eternal embrace.
Crown Mother: A title given to Edda Fyrnorn, denoting her as the king’s mother.
Cultivar: The first season of the year, lasting from Flaros to Kindlos. During this time, the fields are cultivated and prepared, so that they will be ready to receive the seeds during Sowlen.
Dance of a Thousand Candles, The: A dance which only takes place during the Festival of Flame. Couples dance to various compositions while taking care not to snuff out any of the thousand candles at their feet. It is considered a great feat to complete the dance without snuffing out a single candle.
Days: Flariday, Kinday, Spariday, Smolday, Embiday, Slumday, Betriday, Blazday, Pyrday, Ashday.
Dogain: A nation Duskward of Vuria, it follows the Hexacracy. Its capital is Firenz, where the Kais, Vitro Veno, celebrates with festivals and feasts year round.
Drinker’s Remorse: A hangover, often cured with Sheep’s Blood Soup.
Embershine: A Holy Day which occurs on the 30th of Flaros, it marks the birth of Prophet Imran. A great feast is held and a carved tree, bearing representations of Priarch and moments from Imran’s life, is ceremoniously burnt. The ashes from the tree are kept for use in Ashrise.
Eta: Priarch’s last born daughter, she is the Goddess of Women and served as the template for womankind. She is worshiped alongside Lusa as the main deities of the Lusetan Faith, and is worshiped as an equal member of the Six of the Hexacracy.
Etaine: A nation Dawnward of Vuria, it follows the Lusetan Faith. Its capital is Lusem, where Archpriest Xerven rules with a benevolent grace.
Eternal Flame, The: The physical remnant of Priarch, it travels through the sky bringing light and warmth to the world below. It is believed to be the location of heaven, where the faithful will spend eternity in Priarch’s warm embrace. When Judgement Day comes, Priarch will regain his full strength, reconcile with his disobedient children, and will grow to cover the land in his eternal radiance.
Executor of Imran’s Will, The: A title given to the 10000th Prion, marking him or her as the last one to receive Prophet Imran’s guidance and thus the culmination of a thousand years of planning.
Fert: The third season of the year, lasting from Embos to Slumbos. During this time the seeds receive daily doses of fertilizer and their status is carefully monitored, with weak crops removed before entering the growth period.
Festival of Flame, The: A festival which takes place on 30 Ashos, the last day of the year. It marks the end of the year and is a time of celebration and reflection. During the festival, a large bonfire is lit in the centre of town, and every citizen comes forward to burn a parchment containing their sins for the year, thereby allowing them to be cleansed and start the new year free from sin.
Flamelands, The: The name of the settled region which contains all inhabited nations. It was settled 1300 years ago, in 300BC. Many historians believe that the wandering tribes who first settled the land used Mount Erif as a natural landmark, and named the region after the mountain’s simmering flame. The Church of Priarch, however, disputes this, stating that the name instead originates from it being the place where Priarch, the Eternal Flame, first descended upon the world. It is roughly the size of Southwestern USA.
Garden of Imran, The: A section of Origin which is often used for meditation and prayer. It is filled with one hundred candles which, when lit, invite Priarch’s presence and warmth, so that he might guide the occupants to the truth that they seek.
God Scar: A term for the massive fissures which crisscross Vuria. At their deepest they are 1 great-pace deep (1km) and 500 paces wide (500m). The Church of the Priarch states that they formed as a result of the great battle between Priarch and his children, whilst scientists instead posit that they are the result of a massive eruption of Mount Erif and the subsequent earthquakes which tore through the land.
Great Bridge, The: A large stone bridge which spans the Pyric God Scar which surrounds Pyre. 500 paces long and built by master bridge builders who helped settle Vuria, it serves as the main artery into the capital.
Great Flame, The: A large fire which burns at the heart of Imran’s Providence. It has been burning for 1000 years without any need of fuel or bellows. It is said to contain Imran’s remnant, in a manner similar to Priarch and the Eternal Flame, and is said to be a symbol of his continued guidance of the Church, even after his death.
Great-pace: One thousand paces, used to measure long distances, such as between villages. Equates to roughly 1 kilometre.
Half-pace: Half a pace, used in places where a full pace measurement is too much. Equates to roughly 50 centimetres.
Hall of Nobles: A large building located in Pyre’s Royal Plaza, it has a collection of statues, busts and portraits of famous nobles from throughout Vuria’s history. Free for nobles to enter, it is however barred to the lower classes, a point of contention for many in the city.
Hand-width: The width of the palm, using the current king’s measurements. It is used as a common measurement for everyday matters. With every new king it changes, however, most workmen in the kingdom use a standard measurement of about 10 centimetres.
Harvelar: The final season of the year, lasting from Pyros to Ashos. During this time all of the crops are harvested by legions of hard working farmers and servants.
Hexacracy, The: One of the four prominent religions in the Flamelands, it was founded in Rawk-Ruak by a married couple who desired for every God and Goddess to be worshiped equally. It worships the Six children of Priarch (who they see as a force of creation instead of an actual deity): Amat, Vuri, Bal, Ciel, Lusa and Eta. Within the Hexacracy, men and women are seen as equal in all things, leading to a tolerant and forward thinking mindset amongst its practicioners.
Holy Hours: There are four Holy Hours during the day, according to the Church of the Priarch. First is the Rising Hour, which lasts from the first sliver of sunrise until the Eternal Flame has cleared the horizon. During this time morning meditations, morning prayers (prayers for productive and safe days) and weddings are performed. Second is Priarch’s Hour, which occurs when the Eternal Flame lies directly overhead (noon). During this time sermons and prayers for guidance and strength are undertaken. Third is the Fading Hour, which last from the first sliver of sunset until the Eternal Flame has dipped below the horizon. During this time Rekindlings, cremations and prayers for the sick and dying are undertaken. Last is the Sinner’s Hour, which occurs at midnight. During this time, prayers of repentance and burials are undertaken.
Holy Number: In the Church of the Priarch, the powers of 10 are seen as holy. In its base form, 10 is broken into 1 and 0. 1 represents Priarch, flames, life and existence. 0 represents The Void, darkness, death and non-existence. For example, sermons occur every 10 days, 10 Prions are selected for training each year, a year consists of 10 months which in turn consist of three ten day weeks.
Furthermore, numbers such as 100, 1000 and 10000 also carry holy connotations. For example, sermons last for 100 minutes; there are 1000 paces in a great-pace; and Prophet Imran wrote 10000 Holy Orders.
Holy Order: A piece of parchment bearing an instruction written by Prophet Imran before his death. He wrote 10000 in total, and when a Prion finishes their ten years of training they receive one. The order cannot be refused, cannot be shared and cannot be failed.
Honorifics: When speaking to a Prion, the manner of address changes based on the speaker’s relationship to the Prion. Older Prions address younger Prions by their given names, whilst younger Prions address older Prions by their familial names. Prions in the same generation will often drop all honorifics and just use the Prion’s given name. Similarly, Pre-Prions will often be addressed using only their given names.
Imran’s Providence: A tall stone tower which sits at the heart of Origin. It is the repository for Prophet Imran’s Holy Orders and the Great Flame. It is here that the Prions gather to receive their Holy Orders.
Imran’s Rest: A term for Imran’s tomb. Despite the Church favouring cremation over burial, Imran chose to be buried beneath Origin, so that he could continue to watch over it and guide the Prions. Its location is thought to be beneath Imran’s Providence, however none know of the exact method of reaching it.
Katang: A game invented in Slumtown, it consists of five polished stones which are thrown at small bronze targets which are moved progressively further away. It is a common tradition to wager something on the outcome. The name comes from the distinctive katang sound that the targets make when struck, signifying a successful throw.
Kindred: A priest of the Church of the First Son. Comparable to a Prion of the Church of the Priarch.
Knuckle-width: The width of the first knuckle on the index finger, using the current king’s measurements. It is used as a common measurement for everyday matters. With every new king it changes, however, most workmen in the kingdom use a standard measurement of about 1 centimetre.
Kynda: The ancient name for Pyre, existing before the founding of the Church of the Priarch. For unknown reasons Prophet Imran demanded it be changed, as part of his selection of Vuria’s new king.
Lake Elcaro: A large lake lying within a shallow part of the Elcaric God Scar. It has served as a valuable water source and contains a great number of fish and mollusks. It was here that Prophet Imran almost drowned and received his first vision of the future.
Lusa: Priarch’s last born son, he is the God of Men and served as the template for mankind. He is worshiped alongside Eta as the main deities of the Lusetan Faith, and is worshiped as an equal member of the Six of the Hexacracy.
Lusaine: A nation Dawnward of Vuria, it follows the Lusetan Faith. It endured a civil war 60 years ago in which its ruler, King Relix, was overthrown by his military advisor, Commander Asher. Once a staunch ally of Vuria, since its regime change it has closed off almost all contact. Its capital is Mesul, a city which is the mirror image of Lusem.
Lusetan Faith, The: One of the four prominent religions in the Flamelands, it was founded in Lusaine and Etaine by Prophet Thadion, whose powers of prophecy have been debated by historians. It worships Lusa and Eta, Priarch’s last born son and daughter, and states that they fought against their older siblings in order to protect humanity from destruction. It is the smallest and youngest religion in the Flamelands. It is primarily practiced in Lusaine and Etaine, although it has also been observed to be gaining traction in Bartha due to shared borders and customs between the nations.
Lut-Amat: One of the three Amat nations, it lies Northward of Vuria. One of the few nations bordering the distant ocean, it is rumoured to have explored beyond the furthest horizons and found lands filled with unbelievable sights. It follows the Church of the First Son, although there is a new religion, reportedly arising from sailors who have made long voyages, that worships an entirely new pantheon of oceanic gods. Its capital is Port Delmot, where The Collective Will allows for every citizen to have a say in how the nation is run.
Months: Flaros, Kindlos, Sparos, Smollos, Embos, Slumbos, Betros, Blazzos, Pyros, Ashos. Each month consists of three ten day weeks.
Mount Erif: A towering, extinct volcano located Southward of Pyre. It belongs to House Beliere and is the source of their great wealth. Some theorize that, in ages past, its last eruption tore the earth asunder and created the God Scars.
Noble Mark: An item, often a piece of jewellery, that marks a person as belonging to a specific House. It is used to certify a person’s identity and also serves as a status symbol.
Nome: A tiny nation which is completely surrounded by Vuria. It was founded by the Nomads, a group of warriors who refused to submit to Vurian rule. It continues to claim ownership of Pyre and the surrounding areas, stating that they are the rightful inhabitants. They follow the Church of the First Son, which is speculated to be due to their desire to be backed by the Amat nations if war were ever to break out in the region. The capital is New Kynda, where Lord Golb eyes Pyre with thirst in his eyes.
Old Blood, The: A term used to describe the oldest noble Houses in Vuria. They are collectively some of the most powerful and influential men and women in the kingdom. Although they claim to be equal in terms of power, many see House Beliere to be the true might behind the Old Blood.
Origin: A large walled complex located Dawnward of Lake Elcaro. It serves as the headquarters of the Church of the Priarch. Its thick walls and imposing defenses have caused many to liken it to a fortress. Its name comes from the belief that it marks the exact spot where Priarch first descended upon the Flamelands.
Originarium, The: The most important book in the Church of the Priarch. Written by Prophet Imran himself, it contains all of his teachings and Parabils. It is extensively studied by the Pre-Prions until they can quote it from memory.
Pace: The distance between the first and second footfall, using king’s measurements. It is used as a common measurement for estimating distance and scale. With every new king it changes, however, most workmen in the kingdom use a standard measurement of about 1 metre.
Parabils: A set of stories created by Prophet Imran in order to convey various teachings and truths that would otherwise be too difficult or nuanced to understand. Covers a wide variety of topics, such as tolerance (or lack thereof) of other religions; the importance of the Holy Orders and their role in the Church’s prosperity.
Plasmology, The: A term used to describe the creation of the world, as told by Prophet Imran. It is divided into eleven parts, ten of which would go on to become the basis of the names of the days and months of the year. The story describes Priarch’s origins, desire to create the world and his eventual betrayal and battle with his offspring.
Pre-Prion: A title given to those who are currently undergoing the ten years of training necessary to become a Prion of the Church of the Priarch. They were yellow robes and take a wide variety of classes in order to fully prepare for their eventual roles as holy men and women.
Prion: A priest of the Church of the Priarch. Ten are chosen each year and must endure ten years of training before they are ready to receive their Holy Orders.
Pyre: The capital city of Vuria. It is surrounded by the Pyric God Scar, which has protected it from foreign invasion since its founding. The city has one entrance, leading to the Great Bridge, with the Royal Road cutting through the city and ending in the Royal Plaza and the Palace.
Rawk: A nation Southward of Vuria, it follows the Hexacracy. Inspired by the creation of Son-Amat, a married couple, Rawk and Ruak, left Vuria to start their own nation. They created Rawk-Ruak and the Hexacracy, based on their beliefs of equality. However, many centuries later, an ideological shift led to civil war and the eventually separation of the nation into two countries. Rawk places men at the head of the family and gives women very few rights and roles. Its capital is Rawk, where Queen Calissa struggles to hide her forbidden romance with Prince Seren.
Rekindling: A Holy ceremony that takes place around the year. It occurs on the anniversary of a person’s death, and is performed by a family member of the bereaved. A wreath is made by the family and it is burnt whilst praying for the soul of the dead.
Rey-Amat: One of the three Amat nations, it lies Northward of Vuria. It follows the Church of the First Son. Its capital is Vivos, where The Triumvirate do more debating than ruling.
Rize: The fourth season of the year, lasting from Betros to Blazzos. During this time the crops, having been carefully monitored and selected, are left to grow in peace. This allows the farmers to have a rest period, before the busy harvest begins.
Ruak: A nation Southward of Vuria, it follows the Hexacracy. Inspired by the creation of Son-Amat, a married couple, Rawk and Ruak, left Vuria to start their own nation. They created Rawk-Ruak and the Hexacracy, based on their beliefs of equality. However, many centuries later, an ideological shift led to civil war and the eventually separation of the nation into two countries. Ruak places women at the head of the family and gives men very few rights and roles. Its capital is Ruak, where Prince Seren struggles to hide his forbidden romance with Queen Calissa.
Seasons: Follows the harvest schedule. Cultivar, Sowlen, Fert, Rize and Harvelar. Each lasts two months.
Sermon: A Holy ceremony which takes place every ten days. A Prion gathers together the local townspeople and preaches the word of Priarch. It lasts for 100 minutes and starts at Priarch’s Hour (noon). During the sermon, the Prion will read from the Originarium, discuss news from around the kingdom, elaborate on a Parabil and guide the community in prayer.
Slumtown: A town located just outside Pyre, it is home to all of society’s undesirables and miscreants. The majority of the population live in poverty and violence and crime are daily facts of life.
Son-Amat: One of the three Amat nations, it lies Northward of Vuria. It is known for its advanced medical technologies and is seen as one of the most powerful nations in the Flamelands, rivaling Vuria. It follows the Church of the First Son. Its capital is Amatsu, where The Council holds its mysterious and mystifying rituals.
Sowlen: The second season of the year, lasting from Sparos to Smollos. During this time the fields are sowed with seeds.
Stormseer: A Holy Day which occurs on the 20th of Betros, it marks the day on which Imran almost drowned in Lake Elcaro and his first prophetic vision. All flames and candles in Vuria are extinguished for an entire day, no music is played and only uncooked food is consumed.
Tama Fruit: A medium sized fruit which is a staple part of the Vurian diet. It has a green and white hard outer body and a delicate stem (called the umbilical) which connects the fruit to the vine. Internally it has a sweet milk-like substance which is prized for its nutritional value and which can be consumed either as is or curdled and eaten as a meal. Harvesting one, however, takes a fair amount of skill, as the umbilical must be severed in a smooth, quick motion lest the fruit spoil.
Tama Knife: A small knife used in the harvesting of Tama fruit, it has a straight serrated blade for making quick incisions in the umbilical.
Tama Milk Pudding: A popular delicacy made using Tama fruit milk as the main ingredient. It is commonly consumed during festivals and by the nobility.
Unforgivable Sin: A sin which is great enough to consign a person to the Void, it is seen as beyond redemption. Committing an Unforgivable Sin is seen as an offense against Priarch himself, and any who are caught are sentenced to death. Their bodies are not cremated or buried, instead they are thrown into the God Scars, where wild animals will consume them. An example is Patricide, which is seen as an imitation of the betrayal that Priarch suffered at the hands of his children.
Urn, The: The royal burial grounds, located Duskward of Pyre and beside the Urnic God Scar. Here, countless generations of royalty have had their ashes entombed.
Voidkin: A derogatory term used to describe both people who believe in religions other than the Church of the Priarch and those who don’t believe in any religions (atheists).
Void, The: The Great Darkness, a shadowy place which is thought to be beyond the reach of Priarch’s light and warmth. It is the ultimate destination of sinners, and it is believed that they will suffer for their sins through an eternity of darkness and isolation.
Voraine Estate: A large estate located close to Origin, it is the home of House Voraine, of the oldest noble houses in Vuria.
Vuri: Priarch’s firstborn daughter, she is the Goddess of Death and Hate. While unconfirmed, there are rumours of a cult called the First Daughters which practices ritual sacrifice and is dedicated towards destroying the Church of the First Son. She is worshiped as an equal member of the Six in the Hexacracy.
Vuria: A nation which sits at the heart of the Flamelands, it is one of the most powerful nations in the land. It was the first nation to be settled by the ancient nomads, who saw the God Scars as ideal defensive structures. It follows the Church of the Priarch. Its capital is Pyre, where King Silas argues daily with the squabbling nobility.
Wasting Sickness: A sickness of the flesh which affects those who are unable to acquire enough nutrition. It causes them to slowly waste away, as their bodies come to resemble living skeletons. It is a common cause of death in Slumtown.
Waxmark: A special marking made on an infant’s head once they turn one years old. It is made from the wax of a sermon candle, and is carried out by the nearest Prion. It signifies that Priarch has taken the child under his protection, and that, upon death, he will lift up the person into his eternal embrace.
Weeping Sickness: A sickness of the lungs, it causes a persistent cough, weight loss and unpredictable mood swings. There is no known cure, hence the name, for when a family discovers that a member has contracted the disease, all they can do is weep.